The Royal College of Physicians of Ireland Policy Group on Tobacco has strongly supported the proposed bill on the extension of the smoking ban to all outdoor areas where food is served.
Dr Des Cox, Chair of the Policy Group and Consultant in Paediatric Respiratory Medicine said that this was an important development to further reduce smoking prevalence,
“Any level of exposure to tobacco smoke is unacceptable and there is robust research demonstrating a significant risk from second hand smoke in an outdoor setting where smokers are present. The developing lungs of children are particularly susceptible to damage from second hand smoke.
“The health impacts are not limited to smokers; exposure to secondhand smoke results in many of the same health risks. Exposure to secondhand smoke from parents compromises the vascular health of children; so much so that the impact is seen up to 25 years later.
“Other territories, such as Canada, where this measure has been successfully implemented has led to a decrease in second hand smoke exposure.”